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Old 11-02-2011, 08:02 AM   #1
MLK
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Default This time it's for real...

Hello everyone. I've been browsing the various forums for a while now, trying to learn all I can. A friend directed me here to Clutch. I'm so glad he did, as this place appears have many knowledgeable people and the attitudes are great. I've read hundreds of posts, and the only guys I saw getting flamed deserved it. That's a rare thing in the world of keyboard warriors.
So, a bit about myself... I am 36, 5'7" tall, and 156lbs this morning. I've been as heavy as 170 in the past year. I finally decided that enough is enough. I decided I want to lose the gut and get some muscle. I've lost 10lbs in the past 3 weeks, and I figure I've got about 10 more to go before the belly is gone. Then it's time to bulk...
This isn't the first time I've tried to put on muscle mass, but my previous attempts were all wrong. From my routine to my diet, it seems I screwed up every aspect of gaining muscle. And now, the more I learn, the more I realize I don't know.
I have just about chosen a workout routine. I am planning to do a 3x5 as outlined by Darkhorse in his stickied 5x5 beginner post. Still working out the bulking diet, but the plan is forming.
While I am dieting and getting my weight room set up, I am slowly getting in shape enough to get in shape. Hopefully once my equipment is set up and my dieting is done, I will be ready to start working out for real.
I hate asking newbie questions that have already been answered, so i doubt I'll be posting a whole lot. I don't have answers for people since I'm new, and most questions have been asked and answered already. That's what the "search" function is for and more people should use it.
That said, I have my first question... Darkhorse's 5X5 (or 3X5) routine has me doing squats M/W/F (workouts a, b, a, then b, a, b, all start with squats). I thought I read somewhere here that you should only train a muscle twice a week to allow for proper recovery. Which is the correct way to go?
If you've read all this, you've got more patience than me. Thanks for such excellent info and a great website.

Matt
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Old 11-02-2011, 08:31 AM   #2
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Welcome,sounds like you have a very smart friend.you should give him lots of money.
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Old 11-02-2011, 09:03 AM   #3
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Welcome Matt! Never done a bulking routine as I can gain weight easily, losing weight now that I find a challenge. I hope you start a journal that we can follow.
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Old 11-02-2011, 09:25 AM   #4
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Starting a journal is a great point.Not only will it help you to keep on track but others can critique what your doing.
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Old 11-02-2011, 11:21 AM   #5
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I hadn't considered an online journal. Maybe I will. If nothing else, it will shame me into doing it right.
I just got done checking out a handful in the journal forum. I don't get it. So many seem to have crappy diets and erratic workouts. I know everyone is different, but it seems to me like most of the answers to reaching your goals have been written down by Fireproof and Darkhorse and others. Why reinvent the wheel? The templates are all there for the diet and the workout, so shouldn't a newbie be going by the tried and true methods, with maybe a tweak here and there to suit personal needs?
I suppose until I walk the walk, I should keep my opinions to myself. Maybe I'll act the same way.
I tried to download the 5X5 workout template, but I guess I need to upgrade my member status. I'd imagine that means paying money. I also read somewhere that after 50 posts I could download things. Since I am poor, but I don't like asking newbie questions that I can search out the answers for, and don't have any advice to offer all you guys with more experience than me, how should I go about getting enough posts to download the workout templates?
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Old 11-02-2011, 11:55 AM   #6
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It's true about the journals not everyone is following a plan that Darkhorse, FireProof or others have outlined or some don't think diet is as important as working out. But like you said everyone has different options on what works for them and if nothing else it helps to shame you into doing it, I'm not following any set plan (yet) but it helps to keep me on track when someone posts a comment like "hey did you disappear?" Or "looks like good improvement in that exercise" etc.
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Old 11-08-2011, 08:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MLK View Post
I have just about chosen a workout routine. I am planning to do a 3x5 as outlined by Darkhorse in his stickied 5x5 beginner post.
Good idea. There's a few good 5x5 and 3x5 routines (Starr, Madcow, Rippetoe, DH, etc) out there and they're good for beginners / intermediates.


Quote:
Originally Posted by MLK View Post
I thought I read somewhere here that you should only train a muscle twice a week to allow for proper recovery. Which is the correct way to go?


Matt
Not true, just don't train the same bodypart two days in a row.
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Old 11-10-2011, 09:28 AM   #8
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Thanks Scull. 3x/week squats it is then. This week is my first week getting my diet and routine figured out.
It's a bit of a struggle, since I'm needing to learn how to squat, deadlift, and power clean. I've not ever done any of these exercises before. But, between Rippetoe youtube video's and my wife's supervision, I think I'm doing ok. I am sure I can improve the efficiency of these movements, but I don't think I'm going to hurt myself. I'm doing them at home, so no trainer to watch me.
I am kicking butt on my diet. I figured it wouldn't be too bad, as food is not an obsession of mine. I don't take particular pleasure in food, so not a big deal to eat for fuel instead of taste. I'll post up my menu soon for critique.
I can't believe how completely sore I am. From shins to shoulders, nearly every muscle is sore. But sore in a good way, letting me know I've worked them well. Amazing how efficient these few exercises are at hitting everything.
Thanks again everyone, for providing this community of experience and knowledge.
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Old 11-10-2011, 10:51 AM   #9
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If you can get your hands on a copy of Starting Strength by Rippetoe that will help as well. The soreness will go away once you've been at it for a while.
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Old 11-15-2011, 04:40 PM   #10
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Starting Strength is a great book. Another good starting point is some of the journals that people have written on CF as then you can see what has been working for people.


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Old 11-16-2011, 09:05 AM   #11
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Thanks for the advice. I got "Starting Strength" and have read through much of it. It's nice to have all the instructions in print, with pictures. Very helpful in finding the proper form to lift with.
I'm preparing to start my journal. I've been lifting for the past couple weeks, and fine tuning my diet. I didn't see any need to start recording it until I had what I thought was a workable program.
My motivation is high and discipline is very good. I track every calorie and every gram of protein, fat, and carbs. I'm getting 5-6 meals a day.
I've found it easy to hit the protein goal, but have tended to go over the fat grams. Switching to skim milk and cutting out bacon and cheddar cheese ought to fix that. I feel like a liberal, granola crunching hippie when I sit down to eat my plain oatmeal with skim milk and a banana. Now I need to find some open toed sandals...
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Old 11-16-2011, 09:53 AM   #12
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Don't forget a tye-dye t-shirt

Journals are always good, even if you're not on a set routine. It's nice to have your own feedback documented somewhere so you can reference in the future. What does/doesn't work, how certain movements feel, what shouldn't be done after certain exercises, etc. As you're new to the gym there's lots of variables you want to pay attention to that you might not realize yet, so putting your thoughts on paper can end up being beneficial even if it doesn't seem like it will.
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Old 11-16-2011, 10:46 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MLK View Post
Now I need to find some open toed sandals...
Just go with Vibram five fingers, they weren't around for the hippie but if they were they all would have worn them!
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Old 11-16-2011, 11:23 AM   #14
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You're right, Oz. And actually, I have been keeping a very detailed log of everything i eat and of each workout. I track the weights, exercises, and how I felt about each one. There is just so much scribbling and jockeying around with everything, I can't see any sense in showing you all how convoluted my mind is. But it's all coming around now.
I'm typing up my diet now and will submit it shortly for your critiques.
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Old 11-16-2011, 12:45 PM   #15
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Even if you don't post it here, it's nice to have for yourself. It's a great habit to get into.

I used to do full sheets of paper, then did the log book. I changed to keeping computer logs (also an online journal here), and each session I'd look in it to print out little pieces of paper that I'd stick in my pocket and update electronically later, then eventually back to the full log book again. Now I just use my phone and the "Tapatalk" app to access my Clutch journal and write it up between sets. I also use it as my music player so I only carry my phone instead of an ipod and log book. Less stuff to forget!

No matter how ya do it, it's good to just do it.
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Old 11-23-2011, 05:26 PM   #16
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Next you will be driving a Prius.
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